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Diamond in the Rough: Waiver Wire

Football is officially back. Zach Zander, Jake Weaver, and Joseph Herff will be giving you everything you need to know about your waivers releasing every Tuesday this season. We found a ton of gems that are primarily under 50% owned in Yahoo! and ESPN leagues.


Teddy Bridgewater - Panthers - ESPN 15% - Yahoo! 22% (Zach)

My QB stream of the week is Teddy Bridgewater. There was some concern about his past conservative approach to throwing the ball, but he showed a willingness to throw it deep Sunday. His connection with Robby Anderson was obvious, and the ability to dump off to the best screen RB in the league is an added perk. Not to mention he also has great weapons along with the previously mentioned, including a favored breakout WR DJ Moore, Curtis Samuel, and Ian Thomas. The Panthers were forced to throw the ball more after going down to the Raiders, and in the NFC South with the Saints, Bucs, and Falcons, they will be in plenty of shootouts. Go grab Teddy Bridgwater while the price is low.

Mitchell Trubisky - Bears - ESPN 3% - Yahoo! 3% (Joseph)

The first three quarters of the Chicago Bears vs. Detroit Lions game was disappointing for the Bears. They only had six points and were down 23-6. Once the fourth quarter hit, Mitchell Trubisky and his weapons finally put it together. Trubisky finished the game with 24.3 fantasy points as he threw for 242 yards and three touchdowns with an additional 26 yards on the ground. Trubisky clicked with Jimmy Graham, Anthony Miller, and Allen Robinson to lead that comeback. Since he has the New York Giants next week, he is a priority add, especially if you are streaming quarterbacks.

Gardner Minshew - Jaguars - ESPN 15% Yahoo! 26% (Jake)

In one of the more surprising Week one results, Minshew led the Jacksonville Jaguars to victory. He totaled three TD passes and one incompletion on the day while looking at home in Jay Gruden's system for 20.82 fantasy points. Given the tumultuous off-season, I'll trust guys who look confident. Though Tennessee should present a formidable matchup, the Jaguars proved us wrong last week. Even though he only had 19 rushing yards in the season opener, Minshew possesses a solid rushing floor. He finished with the fifth most rush yards in 2019, sandwiched between Deshaun Watson and Russell Wilson. That's good company to keep. If the Jaguars can't keep it close, Minshew will often be throwing to his young pass-catchers. If you're in a pinch, Minshew could put up a quality outing this week and provide stability moving forward.

Running Backs

Nyheim Hines - Colts - ESPN 34% - Yahoo! 20% (Zach)

Hines is going to be a popular waiver add after this week, and rightfully so. The combination of his performance Sunday and the season-ending injury to Marlon Mack is the perfect storm for a waiver wire add. Even before the Mack injury, Hines was involved in the offense, and now he is firmly the pass-catching back for Phillip Rivers. Jonathan Taylor will likely now get the majority of the carries, but Hines had seven this week to pair with his eight receptions and a touchdown. He may not be the workhorse, but with the promise of 10-15 touches a game, Hines is a high floor guy who is worth taking a look at for your fantasy roster.

James Robinson - Jaguars - ESPN 29% - Yahoo! 56% (Joseph)

After trading away Leonard Fournette, fantasy football fans went to go add Devine Ozigbo and Ryquell Armstead. A few days later, James Robinson was declared the starter, but clearly many people didn’t believe that. Robinson, an undrafted free agent rookie, impressed in his first game against a talented Indianapolis Colts team. Robinson carried the ball 16 times for 62 yards and caught a screen pass that he turned into 28 yards while hurdling a defender. That gave him 10 PPR points. It may not have been ultra-impressive in terms of fantasy, but you cannot ignore the workload he received.

Malcolm Brown - Rams - ESPN 8% - Yahoo! 27% (Jake)

We’ve all seen the production of the Rams running back position over the last few seasons when Todd Gurley finished as fantasy’s RB1 in 2017 and 2018. In 2020, the looming question was, who will lead the running backs? For now, Malcolm Brown seems to be the answer as he led the team with 18 carries and for 79 yards. I recommend riding the hot hand for as long as you can because Akers is waiting in the wings for his shot as he totaled 14 attempts. Brown punched in two touchdowns from one and two yards. Respectively, these touches are invaluable in a McVay offense that should produce points. Though Brandon Graham and Fletcher Cox present a challenge, the Eagles gave up two rushing touchdowns to Peyton Barber on Sunday.

Wide Receivers

Anthony Miller - Bears - ESPN 38% - Yahoo! 56% (Zach)

Once the Bears offense got rolling the fourth quarter, so did Miller. Trubisky showed he trusted him in crunch time, targeting Miller multiple times in the fourth quarter, including the game-winning touchdown. He ended the game with 17 PPR points with four receptions on six targets, 76 yards, and a touchdown. Trubisky and Miller had chemistry at the end of last year, and it showed once again on Sunday. The Bears have raved about Miller this offseason having possibly the best training camp of anyone, and now that he is fully healthy for the first time in over a year, we could be witnessing a breakout. Anthony Miller is a waiver-wire priority after Week one.

Russell Gage - Atlanta - ESPN 4% Yahoo! 2% (Jake)

Atlanta remains reliably pass-heavy as Matt Ryan led all QB’s in Week 1 with 54 pass attempts. On 12 of those attempts, he targeted Russell Gage as he compiled 114 receiving yards. Volume is the first step towards success in fantasy. After Mohamed Sanu left town, Gage averaged 7.3 targets per game over nine games for a 16 game pace of 117 targets. The Falcons travel to Dallas, which, despite what the Cowboys showed on Sunday Night Football, should be a high scoring affair. Look for Gage to continue to be involved against a young secondary and build on his 12.67 yards per reception in Week 1.

Parris Campbell - Colts - ESPN 30% - Yahoo! 22 (Joseph)

After having an irrelevant rookie season with Jacoby Brisset at the helm, new quarterback Philip Rivers looks to have found one of his favorite targets in Parris Campbell. The former second-round pick was one of Rivers go-to-guys as Campbell tied for the team lead in targets with nine. He turned that into six receptions for 71 yards. He additionally had one rush for nine yards. Campbell is a great add as Rivers loves to throw the ball. He should receive many targets on a weekly basis.

Tight Ends

Logan Thomas - Washington - ESPN 0.5% - Yahoo! 2% (Zach)

The Redskins came out earlier in the offseason, saying Thomas was the starting TE, but clearly, no one bought into his potential in that offense with his low ownership percentage in leagues. After Sunday, that is likely to change. He only had four catches for 37 yards, but he brought in a Touchdown and ended the game with eight targets. For a Washington offense that played surprisingly well, the number two target spot behind McLaurin is wide open, and Thomas could end up being that guy. His situation reminds me of Darren Waller’s last year, being on a seemingly bad offense with not much competition for targets. There are TE’s every year that seem to come out of nowhere, and I think Thomas could end up being that guy this year.

OJ Howard - Buccaneers - ESPN 5% - Yahoo! 7% (Jake)

With Gronk joining his best friend in Tampa Bay, many were ready to count out Howard. Howard led the tight end group on Sunday with six targets and hauled in a TD on a play designed to leave him wide open in the endzone. Averaging over 15.2 yards per receptions in his young career, Howard has huge upside if Gronk plays a smaller role than anticipated moving forward. A week two matchup against the young Carolina Panthers defense and a fired-up Tom Brady could allow for another opportunity to find the end zone. If Howard emerges further, then he could be a long term piece on many fantasy lineups. With Evans and Godwin demanding most of the attention, Howard can capitalize on being the forgotten man.

Dallas Goedert - Eagles - ESPN 27% - Yahoo! 56% (Joseph)

With the normal Philadelphia Eagles’ injury issues, Dallas Goedert, although the second tight end, is a great fantasy option. As teams will likely key-in on star Zach Ertz, this should free up Goedert to go off, and that happened week one. Goedert led the team in targets, catches, and yards against the Washington Football Team. He caught eight of nine targets for 101 yards and a touchdown. Goedert has the chance to be a solid fantasy option week-to-week and should be added to your roster if you missed out on the top tight ends.

Honorable Mentions

Vikings QB - Kirk Cousins - Yahoo! 34% - ESPN 21%, Raiders QB - Derek Carr - Yahoo! 18%, ESPN 15%, , Washington RB - Peyton Barber - Yahoo! 3% - ESPN 1%, Packers WR - Marquez Valdes-Scantling - Yahoo! 7% - ESPN 2%, Bears TE - Jimmy Graham - Yahoo! 5% - ESPN 10%, Steelers RB - Benny Snell - Yahoo! 13% - ESPN 14%


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